Aphelion Editorial 086
by Dan L. Hollifield
The Usual Rant from the Aphelion Senior Editor
This is my last chance to convince you that you need to vote in the upcoming election. Should I wax poetic on the
duties attached to being a grown-up in the US these days? Nah, you'd
just scroll down the page. Should sling mud at one or the other
parties? Why should I need to? Can't they do that perfectly well for
themselves? My mission is clear here, I just want you to make your
The best way to insure that you wind up with
a bad government is to do nothing. Casting your vote tips the odds in
favor with your point of view, your opinions, your ideals. Not voting
just gives control of your life to other people. And they may not share
OK, that's about all the time I want to
devote to politics.
How about those folks that are flying SSO?
They won the X-Prize! How about that? Civilian Aerospace is here. We
live to see it, folks! I wonder what we'll do next? An Hotel in orbit?
One on the Moon? A second generation of inner solar system exploration
stories has just opened up. And if we decide on a faster engine for our
future ships, the outer solar system will be just as ripe for good
storytelling. Just because some of the classic "Explore the Solar
System" stories turned out to be based on information that turned out
to be incorrect, doesn't mean that new stories written with science
accurate to our times should be neglected.
Something that I've always thought is that we
writers need to give the readers something more than mere
entertainment. If you can educate, please do so. If you can inspire,
more power to you. If you can make the reader want to learn more, then
I bow to you.
Just as the heroes and heroines of those
early SF stories helped readers decide to take up the sciences, we,
half a century later have the chance to influence the next generation
of scientists, dreamers, artists, musicians, and heroes. Reading is the
key to unlock the powers of the universe. Good writing is the key to
unlocking the powers of reading and imagination. We writers have an
awesome responsibility. We can shape the minds that build our world
with the heroes and villains we create- to struggle out our petty
dramas and dash some illumination upon the human condition like a
lighthouse in the darkness, casting its beam out upon the crashing
seas. We owe our readers our best work. Who knows what new reality may
spring from our words?
I now return you to your regularly scheduled reading...
© 2004 Dan L. Hollifield
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